Priority Health Behaviors among South African Undergraduate Students
Health Promotion & Physical Education
This study examined the priority health behaviors of South African youth by administering a questionnaire to 635 undergraduate students enrolled in a large metropolitan university in South Africa. Results indicate that 65.5% of the participants tried cigarettes at least once during their lifetime, over 15.2% had their first cigarette and 31.2% had their first alcoholic drink before age 15, and over 95.4% consumed their first alcoholic drink by age 18. During the month preceding the survey, 37.0% consumed five or more alcoholic drinks on a single occasion and 10.3% carried a weapon at least once. Over 83.3% percent had at least three servings of fruits and vegetables the day before the survey, 44.3% engaged in vigorous physical activity on three or more of the seven days preceding the survey, 10% rarely or never wore a seatbelt when driving, 10% seriously considered attempting suicide, and 46.7% had sexual intercourse in their lifetime. Results were analyzed by demographic variables including sex, race and age. Recommendations for campus wellness programs addressing these issues are included. (Contains 12 tables.)
Porter, K., Johnson, P. H., & Petrillo, J. (2009). Priority health behaviors among south african undergraduate students. International Electronic Journal of Health Education, 12, 222-243.